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Storage Behaviour  1000 Seed Weight  Literature Cited

APG Order: Rosales
Kew Family: ROSACEAE
Genus: Prunus
Species Epithet: africana
Species Author: (Hook.f.) Kalkman
Synonymns: Pygeum africanum Pilger
Life Form: phan.

Storage Behaviour

Storage Behaviour: Orthodox?
Storage Conditions: Seeds can be stored moist (in sawdust at 37% mc) at 3°C (Schaefer, 1990a,c); seeds maintained for one year in moist storage with damp sawdust at 1°C (Albrecht, 1993); initial germination 42%, 39% germination after 9 months storage at 4°C with 20% mc (G. Balcha & J. Blyth, pers. com.); seeds are desiccation tolerant with no loss in viability at 8 % mc (Ouédraogo et al., 1999). Comment: Seed storage behaviour of this species is certainly not recalcitrant. Schaefer (1990a,c) reported that seeds of Prunus africana did not tolerate desiccation to 15% mc, at which moisture content only 4% of the seeds germinated when tested in an ordinary viability test (i.e., not pre-chilled). However when these seeds were stored in moist sawdust at 3°C (i.e., pre-chill treatment), germination increased to 33% after 2 months, 74% after 5 months (Schaefer, 1990a,c). This suggests that desiccation to 15% mc did not kill the seeds but it did induce dormancy, and that pre-chilling at 3°C for 5 months was able to break this induced dormancy. Second, TSW of this species (200g) also supports that this species may show orthodox seed storage behaviour since its TSW is within the range of 30g and 2000g for Prunus species which show orthodox seed storage behaviour.
Species Distribution: Tree native to Africa, occurring in the highland forests at altitudes between 900m and 3400m with average rainfall of about 1000mm.

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1000 Seed Weight

Average 1000 Seed Weight(g): 304
Details of Component Seed Weights:
  1. 224.838; (RBG Kew, Wakehurst Place); Seed; *Seed weights reported may include minor covering structures
  2. 227.27; (FAO, 1975); Seed; Seed mc not stated, but weight is likely to refer to air-dry seed.
  3. 460; (IPGRI/DFSC, 1999); De-pulped drupe; SE=120; weight refers to fresh 'seed' at approx' 40-50 % mc.
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Literature Cited
  1. Albrecht, J. 1993. Tree Seed Handbook of Kenya. Nairobi, Kenya: GTZ Forestry Seed Centre Muguga.
  2. FAO. 1975. Forest Tree Seed Directory. Rome, Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations.
  3. Schaefer, C. 1990a. Seed testing research on species indigenous to Kenya. In Tropical Tree Seed Research- ACIAR Proceedings No 28:132-139.
  4. Schaefer, C. 1990c. Storage and germination of seeds of Podocarpus milanjianus. Technical Note No 11. Kenya Forestry Research Institute.
  5. Mr G. Balcha. Forestry Research Centre, PO. Box 30708, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
  6. Dr J. Blyth. School of Forestry, Edingburgh University, UK.
  7. Ouédraogo, A.S., Thomsen, K., Engels, J.M.M. and Engelmann, F. 1999. Challenges and opportunities for the enhanced use of recalcitrant and intermediate tropical forest tree seeds through improved handling and storage. In: IUFRO Seed Symposium 1998 "Recalcitrant Seeds": Proceedings of the conference (Ed. by M. Marzalina, K.C. Khoo, N. Jayanthi, F.Y. Tsan, and B. Krishnapillay), pp. 227-234. Forest Research Institute, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
  8. RBG Kew, Wakehurst Place.
  9. IPGRI/DFSC. 1999. The Project on Handling and Storage of Recalcitrant and Intermediate Tropical Forest Tree Seeds. Newsletter, 5.

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